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Pink and Black

C Editorial Statement....................................................2

O Ariel Attack Update.....................................................3

Walter Trochez Assassinated......................................4
Smack A White Boy Round Three...............................4

N New Jersey: Westboro Church Reportback................5

Twin Cities Bash Back!: Two Communiques..............6
Radical Queers Bash Back Against HRC...................11

T NYC Queers Bash Back Against NYPD.......................12

Bash Back! at the G20................................................13
Questions to be Addressed Before Denver...............15

E ‘They Can Evict Us, But Not Our Ideas!’.....................17

American Bigotry and Its Deadly Consequences.....19
Homosexuality and Revolution................................22

N Dear Straight Anarchists...........................................26

Hell Hath No Fury.....................................................28
Destruction, Not Separation.....................................32

T Identity, Politics, and Anti-Politics..........................34

Welcome to the fourth issue of Pink and Black At- are seeing fewer submissions for each issue. We are
tack! It’s been about a year since we started publish- always looking for analytical articles, personal es-
ing, so this issue is the one year anniversary issue. says, action reports, graphics, pictures and anything
We’ve come a long way in this year, improving our to do with queer anarchist theory and action. Please
layout and design skills (as anyone who’s read the get in contact with us! We also want to expand the
past issues can see) and working hard to bring you, distribution of Pink and Black Attack, so if you are a
the reader, an exciting publication each time. We’ve distro or an infoshop, get in contact with us!
also been spending time tracking down historical
texts from queer radicals of decades past, and in this A disclaimer: We do not necessarily agree with all
issue we feature the first half of a newly-translated the content we publish; however, we believe the
essay from Daniel Guérin. Additionally, this article content is worth reading and we believe in the im-
contains updates about our comrade Ariel Attack, portance of spreading anti-assimilationist, anar-
who was featured in the last issue after being ar- chist thought and analysis.
rested. We also have several exciting action reports,
information on evangelical homophobes, and an Our next issue is going to come out in May, so the
article on the Marsha P. Johnson Collective in Mem- submission deadline for issue 5 is April 25th.
phis, among other pieces.
As always, we welcome comments, criticisms, and
As excited as we are about this issue, we are also letters! Send any correspondence to pinkandblack-
looking towards the future. We want to continue to
focus on actions and solidarity with our comrades
who face legal troubles. We want to continue to In solidarity,
publish theoretical works and historical documents. Pink and Black Collective
However, we have noticed a disturbing trend: we

- We are queer - We actively oppose - We believe in collec-

anarchists. heterosexism, trans- tive liberation for all
We oppose the phobia, ableism, pa- people.
state and capi- triarchy, classism, and
talism in all white supremacy.
their forms.

- We are anti-assim- - We believe in revolutionary solidarity

ilationists. We refuse with everyone in the struggle against
to beg the state for the state and against the domination
equality. of capitalism. We especially support
our comrades who face legal trouble
because of their struggles.
Ariel Attack Update
In Denver, we have cause to cel- There are two Denver-based an- screenprinting, fashion advice,
ebrate as one warm body became archists facing felony charges and words, and all of that intangible
secure in its relative freedom–the massive legal fees, and we extend “i got your back” stuff, Thank you!
sort of freedom that reminds us our solidarity to Jeff and Noah, And, yeah, it was fun.”
of what we still must do in or- along with Carrie and Scott, Da- Freedom, however, is not some-
der to be free. Yesterday morn- vid Japenga, the RNC8, all of our thing stable on which we can
ing Ariel Attack plead to Class imprisoned comrades; the list is place our feet. It is a struggle
2 Misdemeanor (Criminal Mis- far too long to finish. we fight day by day. Yesterday
chief) in return for the dropping While Ariel’s legal battle has was not a shallow victory–there
of the original Felony charge, and wrapped up, we are making one is nothing shallow about the
the court set the sentence at 11 last request for donations to help warmth of friends’ arms, the taste
months (?!) of unsupervised pro- cut away at Ariel’s debt–about of good food, the drag of finger-
bation and full payment of $5,600 $6,000–and we still have some of nails across skin. Still, this sense
restitution, allowing Ariel to stay these fly Hammer Time t-shirts to of freedom is nothing compared
on the streets and in the arms of move. to what we will experience when
friends. This is much better than to get hooked up. we destroy the prisons.
the possible 2-6 year bit they were A brief message from Ariel: ”To
facing. The restitution had to be everyone who has had my back In solidarity,
paid in full and up front (by tak- these past months, with every- Friends of Ariel, Attack!
ing out a loan) for the deal to go thing from letters and cash to
A year unsupervised is not a
bad deal considering the cir-
cum stances of Ariel’s arrest
and their refusal to name the
‘accomplice’. In case you’re just
tuning in, Ariel was involved
in an attack against the Colo-
rado Democratic Party Head-
quarters in August by means
of hammers and the resulting
media clusterfuck. We feel
there has been a lot of luck
mixed up in this situation, but
we’ll publish a narrative of the
events so that anarchists out
there can see if there’s any-
thing they can learn. Look out
for that in the next couple of
Meanwhile, friends close by
and far away are feeling the
cold grip of state repression,
and the struggle continues.

Honduras: Gay Revolutionary Smack a White Boy Round Three:
Assassinated by Nationalists This One’s For Sylvia
In September 2009, Madison APOC made its grand
entrance into the world with an action against David
25 year-old activist Walter Trochez was murdered Carter, a self-proclaimed historian who denies any
Monday, December 13th in Tegucigalpa. He was a significant participation of trans folk and people of
gay rights advocate and a member of the National color in Stonewall. He also frames the queer liberation
Front of Resistance Against the Coup in Honduras. movement in the U.S. as a gay white man’s movement,
not to mention he shit-talks Sylvia and Marsha to no
Trochez, who had publicly reported the abuses of end… (feel free to Google his name and read the tran-
Roberto Micheletti’s de facto regime was shot in Te- scripts of his speeches.) The University of Wisconsin-
gucigalpa’s downtown. A few days before his death, Madison had invited Carter to speak on campus, and
he had been brutally beaten by officers of the dic- as the room started to fill with white intellectuals and
tatorship while they were interrogating him to ex- college students, mad APOC got into position and…
tract information about the leaders of the peaceful
“Trans, women, POC– you can’t write us out of his-
Copies of a communique were thrown into the air and
The activist had recently published an article expos- scattered across the lecture room. It read:
ing the de facto regime for its human rights viola-
tions. The article, titled “Increase in hate crimes and We are a group of autonomous individuals collectively
homophobia towards LGTB as a result of the civic- known as APOC (Anarchist / Autonomous / Anti-Au-
religious-military coup in Honduras”, was about thoritarian People of Color). We are not affiliated with
how what is currently going on in Honduras is a any other local groups or organizations. We strive to
step backwards for the most inclusive processes that smash every form of oppression, including white su-
have been taking place in Latin America in the re- premacy, patriarchy, ableism, heterosexism, specie-
cent years. sism, transphobia, queerphobia, environmental rac-
ism, ageism, classism and authoritarianism. This is
“It is worth stating that the explicit support of the our response to this fake historian’s “interpretation” of
church in Honduras to the military coup of June 28, history.
2009 prevented holding a referendum organized
by the legitimate constitutional government, while The Stonewall uprising was a series of actions by queer
it put dictator Roberto Micheletti in power”, reads and transfolk, both whites and people of color. The
the article. It also explains that homophobic hate queer and trans population of Greenwich Village acted
crimes have increased since the coup, promoted by boldly to defend themselves against police brutality in
the Honduran church, with the complicity of the their own neighborhood.
oppressing groups.
We are disgusted by David Carter’s blatant racism and
transphobia. Transfolk, women, and people of color
“Once again we say it is NOT ACCEPTABLE that in
have been crucial to not only the Stonewall uprising,
these past 4 months, during such a short period,
but also to the bigger struggle for queer and trans lib-
9 transexual and gay friends were violently killed, 6
eration. With his interpretation, Carter has attempted
in San Pedro Sula and 3 in Tegucigalpa”, said the to write us out of our own history. If he takes it upon
activist in his article, following several press releas- himself to talk about a movement, he should be held
es of the gay, lesbian, transexual and bisexual com- accountable for getting that shit right. Queer insur-
munity. rection is not only for white males, and we are here to
make sure he doesn’t forget it.
The young activist finished his article saying “As
a revolutionary, I will always defend my people, David Carter, we hope you get what you deserve.
even if it takes my life”.
Love, APOC
New Jersey: Westboro Baptist Ignoring the instruction of the
cops and informing them that we

Church Reportback would protest where we wanted,

the Welcoming Committee held
Early this morning, Wednesday 40 or 50 on our side of the street. its ground and we chose our own
Oct.28 2009, the Hub City Welcom- location to mock and silence the
ing Committee (HCWC) including One antifascist who had arrived group. We stood directly across
members of Hub City Anti-Racist earlier than the HCWC and was us- from the WBC and began to send
Action and Trenton Anti-Racist ing a videocamera to document the the same message as we had earlier
Action confronted the sexist, rac- WBC on their side of the street was that morning. Shortly after our ar-
ist, homophobic Westboro Baptist forcibly moved by the police to our rival approximately 50-75 support-
Church (WBC) at their New Bruns- side after he began to question and ers left the “official” protest to join
wick picket stops on their two day criticize the WBC for their use of us as we sent our messages directly
tour of New Jersey. the word “wigger”. to the WBC. After about a half hour
they left this location, again under
The WBC had chosen New Bruns- The WBC’s hateful songs and vi- police escort, and proceeded to
wick High School and the Rutgers cious name calling were drowned their next New Jersey picket loca-
University Hillel building for their out and met with chants such tion.
pickets and local antifascists chose as “These Faggots Kill Fascists!”,
to be a strong presence at both lo- “Queer liberation, human libera- Later in the day they chose to pick-
cations. The plan for the “official” tion, one struggle, one fight!” New et at Jersey City’s Dickinson High
Rutgers organized rally, “Rutgers Brunswick High School students School where, according to re-
United Against Hate” and the gen- showed interest in joining us and ports, they were met with a barrage
eral sentiment of many students walked away from their classes and of rocks and bottles from students
planning to attend, seemed to be towards the street but were moved who had stayed for about an hour
for the most part, one of “ignore by police and told to return to their after school’s dismissal to oppose
them and they’ll go away” or “don’t school campus. the group.
give them attention”. Antifascists
have learned that ignoring hatred After staying for approximately The HCWC distributed litera-
and turning our backs to those who half an hour, they all packed into ture at both demonstrations com-
profess it is not an option, and so one van and were escorted by the memorating the life of the recently
we met and chose to act. New Brunswick Police to their next deceased Marek Edelman, the
picket location on College Ave. to last surviving leader of the War-
At the first location we arrived at the Rutgers Hillel building. Upon saw Ghetto Uprising. Our state-
approximately 7.30am and walked arriving at College Ave, local anti- ment for the day noted that: “while
directly towards the corner that the fascists linked arms and marched Westboro Baptist Church may be
7 or so WBC members were occupy- up the street towards the WBC in a tiny fringe group, their beliefs--
ing. New Brunswick Police, num- hopes of confronting them and let- that those who do not conform to
bering around a dozen, immedi- ting them know how unwelcome their warped vision of a homoge-
ately defended the bigots and came their message of hatred was. Upon neous, totalitarian world must be
between our group and them. We nearing the WBC, we faced oppo- pushed to the margins of society-
were forced back to the street’s op- sition again from the local police -are dangerous. Like Marek Edel-
posing corner. Joining the HCWC who forcibly pushed us back as man, we must take a stand against
at this location were community police instructed us to move to the oppression. Like Marek Edelman,
members, parents, and students designated protest zone “inside the we must not be afraid to speak out-
including a handful of admirable yellow tape” near the “official” pro- -and to act--even as others urge us
members of North Brunswick High test which was taking place at the to be silent. And like Marek Edel-
School’s Gay-Straight Alliance. All Rutgers Hillel. man, we must refuse to oppose
together there numbered around some manifestations of bigotry
only to endorse or ignore others.”
Twin Cities Bash Back:
Two Communiques
Bashing Back in the North Star State: A tance from our own lived realities, so we decided to
Bash Back! Twin Cities Recap do what all rich queerz do in a time of crisis; we got
Dear Diary, gay married! The Gala had been billed as a “festive,
My, how this month has flown by! I have been so busy all styles welcome event” so we dressed in our hottest
bringing the queer insurrection; I’ve hardly had time wedding attire and stormed into the dinner.
to write everything down. Where to begin…
Despite heckling from HRC security, we stood our
ground and held a brief marriage ceremony and
handed out leaflets inside. Before the HRC corpo-
rate hacks could push us out the door we were able to
read the following vows:

When the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) held its

annual Gala Dinner and Silent Auction Saturday,
Sept, 12th, autonomous queerz Bash Back: Twin Cit-
ies, The Revolting Queers, and the Twin Cities Aveng-
ers were there to welcome them even though we had “Do you, Bash Back! Twin Cities, take one another
not been invited and had no intention of paying the to be insurrectionary radical queerz, to resist and to
$200 entrance fee. liberate ourselves from all systems of domination,
for glitter and for cupcakes, for unicorns and for rain-
This year’s Gala was themed “Speak the Truth”, a bows, in genderless bathrooms and in the streets, in
truth which congratulated rich gay celebrities and love and in rage, from this dance party forward?”
gave them expensive “visibility” awards, while Duan-
na Johnson, Leeneshia Edwards, Tiffany Berry, & the “We do!” We held our wedding reception dance par-
thousands of other murdered transwomen didn’t ty outside and consumed our marital cupcakes to the
even receive an honorable mention… beats of Janet Jackson, Cher and Lady Gaga. We look
forward to the HRC inviting us to its annual Gala
It was clear from the bourgeois atmosphere, and the next year for our one year anniversary.
serious lack of dancing that this Gala was meant to
be some sort of overpriced support group for whiney On October 11th we glamdalized a bridge the night
elite gays and lesbians, to express their dreams of a before it was used for a local “equality” rally in con-
bigger prison industrial complex (hate crime legis- junction with the National March for Equality in
lation), heteronormativity (gay marriage), and more DC. The bridge was beautified with phrases such as
state militarism (don’t ask, don’t tell). “Liberation Not State Sanction – No To Heteronor-
But Bash Back! Twin Cities, was fed up with the ri- mative Assimilation”. During the rally, we attached a
diculous state-lovin’ of the HRC lobby and its dis- banner to the bridge that read simply “Liberation not
Assimilation!” This action was not only meant to dis-
rupt the complacent rally for (rich, white, homonor-
mative) gay and lesbian “rights” but to also coincide
with National Coming Out Day.

Bash Back! Twin Cities resists National Coming Out

Day because it is reformist and forces the production
of gender-deviant subjects into rigid identity catego-
ries that do not disrupt the regime of white hetero-
normativity. BB! Twin Cities asks the questions “Who
gets to ‘come out’ and “why are there so few identity
choices when you do”? BB! Twin Cities rejects the The police indiscriminately pepper-sprayed the
idea that your sexual practices equals your sexual crowd a few times and made three arrests. The first
identity and asserts that any group that thinks this is person arrested was an Austin local who tripped over
true needs to check its cultural privilege. We disagree the Nazi’s loud-speaker while the crowd was trying to
with mainstream LGBT movements in general be- move forward. The second, was a Bash Back! member
cause they reinstate systems of domination through who police allege threw a glitter bomb at Eric. The
their state-sponsored tactics and politics and frankly third, was a Bash Back! member, and was arrested for
their inefficiency to yield material change is simulta- simply telling police that he was not a “ma’am”, that
neously enraging and a snooze cruise. he was a transboy, when an officer asked him to “Get
back ma’am”.

The two Bash Back! members arrested were charged

with disorderly conduct, unlawful assembly, and ob-
struction of legal process. We need your help to raise
money to cover their legal expenses. Please check out
the support website we set up at: http://bashbackle-
Love and Rage,
Bash Back! Twin Cities

Twin Cities Bash Back!…Again and Again

and Again
On Saturday October 17th, Bash Back! Twin Cities or- Dear Diary,
ganized a radical queer bloc to confront a racist neo-Sorry we’ve been too busy to write. We’ve got three
Nazi rally in Austin, a small town in Southeastern more actions to catch up on…
Minnesota. Aside from making the counter-demon- On the afternoon of October 31st, 2009 — a night
stration more fierce and fabulous, the National So- that would go down in Bash Back! TC history as “Hal-
cialist Movement Twin Cities Unit Leader Corporal loqueen”– a crew of radical queers dressed in our
Erik Flann was successfully glamified with a green most fabulous costumes and convened at the Lake
glitter bomb on their disgusting Nazi uniform. Street light rail station. Scary costumes abounded,
with folks dressed as clipboard-wielding HRC repre-
While one of the Nazis hit a demonstrator’s hand sentatives, Hillary Clinton/Barrack Obama worship-
and broke their camera and another showed up to ping liberal lesbians, and camo-clad DADT military
the rally with a stun gun, baton, and body armor – gays!
not surprisingly – the police were only interested in
going after counter-demonstrators while protecting Once our posse assembled, we boarded a train bound
the Nazi scum. for the most terrifying place in the Midwest -the
Mall of America- the setting for a racistly named

event called “Nick or Treat” put on annually by Rosie But we had been braving heteronormative society for
O’Donnells childrens media conglomerate Nickel- a lifetime and the bitter cold weather all night, so we
odeon. weren’t going to let a bunch of mall cops get the best
of us. Using our charm, our costumes, and our cun-
When we arrived, we found that we weren’t on the ning to our advantage, we escaped security checks
invite list and that this safe-haven of American capi- and boarded the train towards downtown.
talism was filled to capacity with mega corporations, Upon departure, we brought out a boombox and mas-
consumers, assimilationists, tourists, & security. But sive amounts of glitter, and convened a dance party.
that didn’t stop us. We pushed through the crowds While it started off as just our queer crew dancing
avoiding security and found ourselves peering over –and giving MetroTransit riders their money’s worth
the fifth floor balcony. for once— things eventually spun out of control and
turned into a full-fledged train party, as astonished
From there, we threw down thousands of fliers which passengers joined in, showing us their best dance
condemned consumerism and outlined the link be- moves. It wasn’t long before the train floor was cov-
tween capitalism and the oppression of trans people, ered in glitter confetti, the boom box was playing at
people of color, womyn, and queer people to the full volume, folks were singing along, and passengers
massive assembly of people on the first floor. Think- were hanging from the rails dancing.
ing this was a “planned event” folks began pushing
and shoving like greedy Wall Street bankers to get When we arrived back at the Lake Street station, we
their hands on a flier. Here’s the text from one of the parted from the worked up light rail passengers —
leaflets: who were still dancing, shook some of the glitter out
of our hair, and said our goodbyes…
Queers continually have our desires, bodies, and gen-
ders policed in public spaces and privatized sites of On Sunday Nov. 15th Bash Back! Twin Cities partici-
capitalism. Queer and trans folks -especially queer pated in our own way in a march and demonstration
and trans people of color- not only face queer-bash- put on by Join The Impact Twin Cites – a reformist
ing but are also targeted and brutalized by police on front group founded and controlled by straight folks
a regular basis. Aside from targeting queers who are from one of the local Trotskyist groups (Socialist Al-
out in public, the state continues to raid gay bars and ternative). The rally and march was called “Legalize
other queer spaces. Love” and began with speakers in front of the gov-
ernment center and later marched to the Bedlam
On Saturday, October 3rd 2009, police in Memphis, theatre for more speeches and slam poetry. Its fliers
Tennessee raided the Marsha P. Johnson Queer Col- boasted “inspiring report backs from the National
lective- a radical queer social center and safe house Equality March”, a questing asking readers if they are
for queer and trans youth. The police broke in with “Outraged by the vote to ban same sex marriage in
guns drawn without any announcement to vacate or Maine?”, and an appropriated quote from Martin Lu-
warrant and dragged those inside through a broken ther King, Jr. Being tired of the way gay marriage has
window pain before detaining them although no ar- co-opted our identities and utterly sick of this new
rests were made. trend to assimilate the Civil Rights Movement, we
decided to attend to make it known that; Legaliz-
There are no safe spaces except those temporary sites ing straight family models and having them reflected
of community that we struggle to create and defend in our own families is NOT at all conclusive to gay
for ourselves. This is one of those spaces. rights.
Liberation Not Assimilation – Queers Bash Back!
We burst onto the scene in the middle of their pre-
It wasn’t long before a security guard got ahold of a march rally in a pink and black bloc, and were im-
flier and called over the radio for “heightened secu- mediately approached by one of the speakers who
rity, and that there be a “manhunt” (or transhunt, if said they wanted us to make our point on the mega-
you’d rather) for the individuals who threw this dis- phone because the “movement is severely lacking the
gusting literature.” voices of womyn, people of color, & trannys”; when
this speaker approached one of the straight organiz- shortcut which left a queer persyn in a wheelchair
ers about that possibility – that organizer reportedly attending alone with Bash Back! in the streets to go
said we could not and called us fascists, and “a shame the long way around, not only leaving that persyn be-
to ‘our’ movement”. hind but leaving them vulnerable to cars and arrest
in the street. Near the end, police came up to us in
the streets and told us that back a ways someone’s
knee had given out and they needed help getting up
and getting to the train station. The police officer,
then looked at one white persyn and said “you should
hurry, this is a rough neighborhood, she might get
robbed” (referring to Minneapolis’ largest Somali
neighborhood), at this point some Bash Back!ers be-
gan calling the officer and his comments racist and
classist. Unsurprisingly, liberal gays attempted to in-
terrupt us by saying “he’s on our side.”
Once at the Bedlam we walked inside to find a white
After the rally, people began assembling to march. persyn on stage repeating “We shall overcome, We
As the march proceeded, and chants became increas- shall overcome.” At that point we decided we couldn’t
ingly assimilationist, we responded to their chants take any more of this “Gay is the new Black” cultural
with our own such as “Smash the church, smash the misappropriation bullshit, and left.
state, don’t get married, fornicate!”, “Gay marriage/
gay rights… Same Struggle? Not quite”, & “Queers During and after the march, a few liberals tried to
who seek equality with straights lack ambition”. start criticizing our views by starting with the prem-
ise that “we have the same goals”, and that “although
While chanting “Queers don’t deny it, Stonewall marriage is a terrible institution, expanding it is
was a fucking riot” one persyn turned around and a step in the right direction”. We also argued with
screamed “shut the fuck up you backwards fucks, them that productive dialogue does not take place in
you’re hurting the cause!!!” at us. the streets while being surrounded and “supported”
by cops. We passed out some literature explaining
The police were blaring their sirens at us and told our views which some people (mostly organizers)
the marshals that we could only take one lane. Bash tore up and threw on the ground but most people
Back! was told by the marshals to get out of the oth- read eagerly and with interest…
er lanes but we held our ground even as the police
tried to herd us into one lane using their squad cars. We’ve thought it necessary to take our collective rage
As police presence grew we changed the chant to to the streets more than once in the past few months.
“Queers don’t deny it, stonewall was a police riot!.” On Wednesday, December 2nd, hundreds of individ-
We wish it was done in irony, but once the cops uals convened on Loring Park in Minneapolis in re-
were trying harder to suppress the march the group sponse to Barack Obama’s announcement of a troop
started chanting “Show me what democracy looks surge in Afghanistan. Autonomous queerz from Bash
like, This is what democracy looks like” to which we Back! Twin Cities along with other individuals repre-
agreed later we should’ve responded “shut the fuck senting various groups then marched middle of rush
up you backwards fucks” but instead countered with hour traffic, chanting and dancing and ignoring the
“show me what a police state looks like, THIS is what honks from angry drivers. Hundreds of people took
a police state looks like.” over the streets of downtown Minneapolis to disrupt
“business as usual” and to oppose escalation of war.
As we approached the Bedlam, police began blar- Bash Back! Twin Cities put out an anti-authoritarian
ing their sirens, and cutting into our march. At this bloc callout to “Bring Sexy Back”:
point the main marshal (one of the straight organiz-
ers from the Trotskyist group) ran to the front and
diverted the march from the street over a curbed We’re Bringing Sexy Back: A Call for an
Anti-Authoritarian Bloc at the March Against We are asking our fellow anti-authoritarians in the
the Troop Surge Twin Cities to come together to build community in
the streets and bash back against all systems of op-
The Anti-War movement in the U.S. today is a pathet- pression. Let’s up the sexy, fun, mischievous militan-
ic and polite plea to the rulers of the nation to listen to cy in this town and the anti-war movement in general.
their conscience and pray for peace. Enough pander-
ing to liberal politicians who talk about change and No war but the social war.
hope but then uphold the status quo once they are
elected. Enough standing on the sidewalk in orderly We also brought a mobile sound system called the
rallies waving peace signs. Funk Mobile, which kicked out some amazing beats
like Testament’s remix of “Run This Town”. Bash Back!
Enough permitted marches that do nothing but ex- Twin Cities had a militant presence in the march, in-
press opinions that those in power ignore. We are five terrupting liberal chants with revolutionary classics
years into this war and the same old tactics are not like “Bring the War Home!” and other radical chants
getting us anywhere. People have dropped out of the and cheers. We helped keep folks together, calm
movement in droves because of the ineffectiveness of and collected, taking up as much of the streets as
these tactics. If we want to build an effective move- we could despite police trying to break up the crowd
ment that could actually end the wars and infuse and herd us over with police horses. We were some-
some life and energy into the corpse of the U.S. Anti- what on edge because of police provocateurs in the
War movement, we have to get more creative, disrup- black block (among other things, the provocateurs
tive, and empowering. Enough is Enough! detoured the march and asked us if we had hammers
and encouraged us to go break bank windows) but
we kept their interference to a minimum and made
sure that others were aware of them and didn’t say or
do anything that would be obviously incriminating.

As the march came to 3rd Avenue and 10th Street,

several dozen individuals formed a “soft blockade”
by sitting in the intersection and unfurling a ban-
ner. Eleven people were arrested and the march con-
tinued in different directions. No one affiliated with
Bash Back! was arrested. Bash Back! played a crucial
role in making jail solidarity happen that night for
In order to end the war, we have to act from the prem- those arrested. We put out a call for jail support and
ise that corporations and politicians do not give a shit went to get food, drinks, and warm clothes and then
whether we want the war or not. The only way the we waited outside for our friends to be released as it
war will end is if we – not the politicians and corpora- began to snow. 9 of the 11 folks arrested were released
tions– decide to end it. Politicians and corporations that night were charged with misdemeanor unlaw-
care about two things: power and money. History is ful assembly and released on bail. The other 2 were
quite clear; those in power will end the war only when released the following day. Aside from having their
it becomes unviable due to public unrest and direct cuffs on too tight and one persyn having their chin
action. We have the power to end the wars as soon as slammed in the pavement during their arrest and the
we come together to exercise that power. police interrogating folks individually for being an-
We at Bash Back! are still optimistic about the op- archists, all those arrested were ok and are doing fine
portunities for queers to bring down the military (and now…
the state and capitalism along with it…) from the in-
side out (see Bash Back! Communiqué #666), but we Sinqueerly yours,
are not content to sit back and wait for the cumming
insurrection. BB! Twin Cities

Radical Queers Bash Back
Against HRC Headquarters
and climb the social ladder towards becoming
Last night, Obama spoke at the HRC fundrais-
ing gala and currently the HRC website declares,
“President Obama underlines his unwavering
support for LGBT Americans.” The vast amount
of organizing resources the HRC wastes on their
false alliance with the Democratic party leaves
radical queers on the margins to fend for them-
selves. Our struggle has always had to resist the
repression of conservative tendencies in govern-
ment and society to gain liberation in our lives.
The gourmet affair was sponsored by 48 corpora-
tions including giants Lockheed Martin, Micro-
soft, and Wachovia Bank. At $250 dollars a plate
the HRC served our movement a rich, white, he-
ternormative atmosphere that purposefully ex-
October 11 cludes working class queer folks.
Human Rights Campaign HQ (Washington DC) REMEMBER THE STONEWALL RIOTS! On the
Glamdalized By Queers Against Assimilation 40th anniversary of Stonewall, pigs raided a queer
HRC headquarters was rocked by an act of glamdal- bar in Texas, arrested and beat our friends, and we
ism last night by a crew of radical queer and allied looked towards politicians and lawyers to protect
folks armed with pink and black paint and glitter us. This mentality is what keeps the money flowing
grenades. Beside the front entrance and the in- to the HRC and their pet Democrats, and keeps our
scribed mission statement now reads a tag, “Quit fists in our pockets.
leaving queers behind.” Most of all we disagree that collective liberation will
The HRC is not a democratic or inclusive institu- be granted by the state or its institutions like pris-
tion, especially for the people who they claim to ons, marriage, and the military. We need to escalate
represent. Just like society today, the HRC is run by our struggle, or it will collapse.
a few wealthy elites who are in bed with corporate ~~Love and Solidarity~~
sponsors who proliferate militarism, heteronorma-
tivity, and capitalist exploitation. The sweatshops
(Nike), war crimes (Lockheed Martin), assaults on
working class people (Bank of America, Deloitte,
Chase Bank, Citi Group, Wachovia Bank) and pa-
triarchy (American Apparel) caused by their spon-
sors is a hypocrisy for an organization with “human
rights” in their name.
The queer liberation movement has been misrepre-
sented and co-opted by the HRC. The HRC margin-
alizes us into a limited struggle for aspiring homo-
sexual elites to regain the privilege that they’ve lost
NYC Queers Bash
Back Against NYPD
October 15, 2009-
Listen up bitches!

The 77th Precinct is fucked up, and here’s why:

Bash Back!
-officers of the 77th are responsible for consistent
harassment of transpeople, sex workers and queers
-the assault of two lesbians outside of the Ife Lounge
on May 16th
-like all police officers, they colonize poor neighbor-
hoods and threaten the safety of everyone

We act in solidarity with Duanna Johnson, the pa-

trons of Fort Worth’s Rainbow Lounge, Ariel Attack,
Bash Back! Lansing, New Jersey 4 and countless
other fabulous queers and trannies bound by the
prison-industrial complex—with no safe words. We
want not just accountability for these specific cops
but the complete abolition of police and prisons.

In a fabulous act of resistance and exterior design,

we have beautified the squad and personal cars of
MAY 27-30
the 77th Precinct with a simple, yet classy, applica-
tion of spray paint, stencils and glitter everywhere.
(We’re still queefing glitter.) Fine images of cops on
fire and such fierce phrases like: “This is what hap-

pens to transphobic cops,” “A change I can believe in”
and “A very simple solution…” are proudly displayed
on the windows and doors of New York’s Finest.

Just as a reminder to them and all of us: these pigs
are vulnerable, and they’re only as powerful as we let
them be. They can and will be challenged and held

That’s some real shit.

Yours queerly,
Farosha Shakure
Press Secretary of Homoexplosion, Aries, and li-
censed switch blade carrier.
Homoexplosion is a radical queer/trans group of fly
fatherfuckers. We advocate people fucking in the
street and burning shit—especially cops. COM
Bash Back! at G20

As you might have known, Bash Back! queers knew that this particular street was only a block
fucking threw down for the G20 summit protests away and were prepared for what was to approach
at Pittsburgh in September of 2009. Many have them.
expressed that the Bash Back!-themed march was
the best run of the weekend. And we know it to be Of coarse, the anxiousness came and we took
true, being as Bash Back! folks know how to fuck down E-trade Financial in a swift moment of fury.
shit up and bring our wrath to all who stand in our After that, with the beautiful music of the march-
way. ing band at our ears and dumpsters being turned
over in flames, no establishment stood a fucking
People in black everything meet up on DeSota chance. Pamela’s Diner, Panera Bread, McDon-
Street in the late evening with a marching band ald’s, Bruegger’s Bagels, Subway, Rite Aid, FedEx
ready to play. A figure spoke out words in some Kinko’s, American Apparel, the Pitt Shop, and
sort, “We want this march to be inclusive for ev- other businesses felt our rage. Even a frantic turn
erybody so we’re going to ask people not to com- off the route didn’t stop us, a police substation in
mit any property destruction...” the figure held a our way was torn apart. As the police tried to bring
good pause while the crowd responded in the most a halt to the destruction we took advantage of the
displeased, disappointed fashion. More words were terrain and held our shit together long enough,
soon to come out... “Until we reach Forbes!” All after a small dispersal of the crowd, to move on to
Craig Street to tarnish Quizno’s Subs, PNC Bank, fool laid on the ground in utter pain where he be-
Irish Design Center, BNY Mellon, and Citizens longs.
Bank. After this we all went back to our “so-called
normal” lives and left the scene. And to the girl who proclaimed, “these kids don’t
even know what they’re protesting” we say this:
Now, about the mixture of people in the crowd that We have no sympathy for these business who
stood in awe and confusion. One was even idiotic exploit us and degrade us. We will bring down
enough to express his discontent in poorly chosen this capitalist society that you relish with your
words. As a boy said “what the fuck are all these Starbucks cup in your hand and that alcohol bottle
faggots doing in my city,” he immediately felt the falling out of your bag with our fists and hammers.
blow of a sucker punch to his side. The force and You will go to drink to relieve your blind unhappi-
power of the punch took down both the receiving ness as we cloak ourselves in the night to avenge
end and giving. As the fool tried to gather himself our anger. Yes, we know what we are doing, and it
up and make his retaliation amongst our own he is you who will fail to experience and learn what we
was greeted with the thick taste of pepper-spray live. You don’t know what you are living for; we do.
from yet another queer-loving black figure. The We will see you next time.


Questions to be Addressed Before
Bash Back! Convergence in Denver
1. Some things heard at the 2009 Bash Back! Conver- mean, we are anarchists right!”
gence in Chicago: Silence for a bit
“That train occupation was just so fucked up. Ev-
eryone was kissing and being so queer around all of Another White Person: “We aren’t all anarchists”
these poor People of Color who couldn’t possibly un- Yet Another White Person: “That march was so
derstand what that meant” – A racist, who fancies fucked up! Everyone needs to work on their shit!”
themselves as ‘an ally’ or something. ——–
“Twinkle Fingers” - Evan Greer, of Riot Folk
Some questions to be addressed before the 2010 Bash
“This is a NON-VIOLENT protest!!!” - Someone Back! Convergence in Denver.
dragging rubbish out of the street to allow police ve-
hicles through. What is Bash Back!? Is Bash Back! a network? An
organization? A gang? A tendency?
“I mean, it was just really fucked up. All of these peo-
ple with passing privilege were rioting and I didn’t If we are a network, what do we find in one-another?
have a buddy with me, so I had to take my skirt off What do we hold in common? A desire? A passion?
to walk back to where I was staying. I was forced to A strategy? An Ideology? or simply an identity, a
pass!” – Evan Greer, (certified expert in the oppres- name?
sion of transpeople) in regards to a rowdy march
where several transpeople were arrested and/or at- If BB! is an organization, we are doomed from the
tacked by police while they were getting wild. start. We can expect a future filled with heavily mod-
erated consensus meetings upon heavily moderated
——– consensus meetings until we are nothing but ar-
rogant hipsters meeting in a bookstore and taking
“The ‘riot’ in Oakland after Oscar Grant was mur- nearly six months to plan or write anything. If we are
dered was not a riot. It was just a bunch of privileged ever to have a member-list, count us off of it.
white anarchists. A riot isn’t a riot if it isn’t in your
own neighborhood.” - Eric Stanley of Gay Shame, If we are a gang, what is our ritual? How should we
displaying that he knows about as much about Oak- fight? How do we measure in/exclusion? In what
land as he does about what constitutes a riot. ways can we share the means of our existences?
What are the best ways to have there for eachother?
——– How do the trappings of activism and organization
limit us? More importantly, how cute is our outfit?
White Person: “that march was so racist and so Have we worked out our dance-moves? If we are to
fucked up” be a gang, we have so much to do.

Another White Person: “that march was so racist If we name a tendency, how do we make that ten-
and so fucked up. There were people of color in the dency spread like fire? How can we make that ten-
neighborhood and womyn and transpeople. “ dency escape the dead-ends of liberal identity poli-
tics and/or academia and/or activism? How will we
Several female-bodied, people of color who live in find commonality with other forms-of-life that bash
Chicago: “Actually, it wasn’t fucked up. Bash Back! back? How can we make this world explode?
isn’t supposed to be polite. Destroying capitalism ——–
and normalcy won’t be pretty or polite. It will prob-
ably be very rude. That’s what “Bash Back!” means. I Is our violence one of substance or of image?
Are we joking when we write about violence? What lives far from our own. Gladly and on the other hand,
is meant by that picture of beautiful people holding there were those who neglected the banal criticism
baseball bats and sledge hammers? Is this symbol- from the “anarcho-liberals” and erected barricades
ism? Is it real? Does it mean anything to bash back? to for once impede the State’s grip on their entire
existence. Let be. For better or for worse, a split is
The road forks here. Will radical queers continue inevitable. A split so that the tired discussion about
down the path of the image of militancy; of irrel- whether or not to build barricades can be silenced
evance? If so, we can expect many more films and like a drunk giving an inappropriate eulogy at a sol-
photoshoots displaying a glamorous armed struggle emn funeral. A scission so that we get on with the
(like the red army faction with glitter). We can ex- important questions, refuse to consider the morality
pect more celebration of riots forty years ago and of barricades, and only correctly concern ourselves
uprisings across the ocean (accompanied, of course, with how to make them taller, stronger, more ter-
by condemnation of riot in the here and now – by rible, so that metropolitan avenues can become as
crying over broken windows and over-tipped news- uncontrollable as an element of nature.”
paper boxes). Violence will be acceptable as long as ——–
it takes the for of abstraction, an artform, a historical
occurrence or a blip on the global news feed – when What does it mean to resist oppression? Will our
it is separate from us. It will always be refused on the anti-oppression work take the same tired forms of
level of our daily lives, when we become its agents. caucuses, and guilt-ridden ally workshops? Will we
simply be the extreme vanguard of the same useless
Or we can locate ourselves within the violence of identity politics regurgitated by liberal studies pro-
daily life in capitalism. The knowledge of violence fessors in every university in the land? Will we re-
felt on our skin will translate to a violence felt in our peat the formulas that fail us over and over? Or can
fists, our arms, our voices. From here, bash back! can we imagine something else?
only ever conceivably name the praxis. Self defense
networks, fight clubs, complicity, intimacy, pepper- To emphasize: the forces occupying our lives are at
spray, bodily fluids and a healthy amount of glitter. the same time all pervasive and minute. Terrible and
We’ll choose the latter. yet invisible. A totality and a multiplicity. The mon-
——– ster that is destroying the world, is the very same
monster that makes us hate our bodies, that enslaves
The question of barricades. us to gender, that ravages our desires. To refuse this
society will require new weapons. Let’s begin with
In the ongoing global civil war between capitalism human strike; all else has yet to be developed.
and its negation, we are left to choose sides. There is ——–
the side for the barricades (where you’ll always catch
me) or the side opposed. To be clear: the opposition What is our purpose?
to barricades is always an endorsement of order; al-
ways to side with the police, the queerbashers, the The answer to this question prefigures and deter-
judges and juries, the prisons, the state. So where mines all the rest. Do we want a nicer, friendlier,
will we find you? Amongst the rabble or in line with more diverse, inclusive, radical, hyper-mediated,
the snitches and good citizens of empire? less-fucked-up version of this society? Or do we
want to watch it burn? Are we interested in progress
A friend wrote from Greece concerning a newly or are we interested in rupture? Will we settle for all
translated piece on the insurrection: this but a little different? Or are we insatiable?
“I worry as to whether its even worth presenting a
text that celebrates barricades to readers that con- If you desire a queer capitalism, please say home. If
demn their constructions in Chicago streets. In my you want to destroy capitalism, we’ll see you in Den-
eyes, what could only be worse is for “Instead of a ver!
Conclusion” to be looked at as an exotic applause to
blockades, riots, and street fights only in places and

“They can evict us, but not ents…but it was raided before we
got that project off the ground”.
The space was truly an important

our ideas!”:
space for the Memphis radical
queer and trans community, as it
provided both shelter and social
The Marsha. P Johnson Collective activities.

Squatting has, for the past few

decades, been an important part
of anarchist resistance to capital
and state power. Additionally,
autonomous social centers and
spaces have been central to both
anarchist struggle and queer lib-
eration, dating from the example
of the Street Transvestite Action
Revolutionaries (S.T.A.R.), a revo-
lutionary trans group in New York
City. In the spirit of both of these
traditions, the Marsha P. Johnson
Queer Collective was opened on
June 14th, 2009 in Memphis, Ten-
nessee by members of Memphis
Bash Back!.
phobic queer youth center, a rac-
ist gay/lesbian community center, Beyond working to meet the
Named for a co-founder of needs of the local queer and trans
gay assimilationist-owned busi-
S.T.A.R., the Marsha P. Johnson community, the Marsha P. John-
nesses and a million gay “lobby”
Collective was a squatted social son Collective also enjoyed the
groups”. With no place for radical
center and living space for queer support of most of their neigh-
queer and trans youth in either
and trans youth in Memphis. bors. The other houses on the
straight society or in the gay es-
The house, located at 938 Bruce block included a family, a col-
tablishment, the necessity of the
Street, was on a block where, lective of artists, and a house of
squat becomes clear.
prior to the squat opening, over students, all of whom supported

half the houses were unoccupied. the squat in its early days, from
The squat served many functions
Given that the current social or- loaning tools to fix up the house
for the community, both as a liv-
der has repeatedly shown that it to allowing the use of their toi-
ing space and a social center. It
is unwilling to meet the needs of lets, showers, and computers.
contained an infoshop, served
queer and trans people, the com- However, one neighbor was de-
as a meeting space for Memphis
munity decided to meet its needs cidedly hostile to the squat and
Bash Back!, and provided hous-
outside of the current system. the people who lived there. A
ing for homeless queer and trans
Memphis has no shortage of as- middle-aged white woman, she
youth, an alternative to the Mem-
similationist LGB (T/Q purposely threatened at least one person af-
phis Gay and Lesbian Commu-
withheld, as per an interviewee’s filiated with the squat, and told
nity Center’s temporary housing
statement) organizations and neighbors that she would “love to
that required dues and had strict
businesses. These include “a mil- break in the door while those fag-
curfews and time limits. Another
lion gay bars that have been taken gots are sleeping, and throw their
intended function of the center
over by straight people, an ageist AIDS-infected asses in the street”.
was to provide “a safe space for
gay book/novelty store, a trans- In typical reactionary fashion, she
sex workers to stay between cli-
never followed through on this declaration. Instead, use the raid as political pressure to solve the vandal-
she demonstrated her cowardice by calling the no- ism. Those involved with the squat had no desire to
toriously racist and anti-queer Memphis Police De- “to have any part in putting another innocent Black
partment to evict the squat. man in prison,” and so they did not cooperate.

On October 3rd, 2009, police violently evicted the Fortunately, those involved with the squat escaped
Marsha P. Johnson Collective. They broke out a win- without any criminal charges being filed, including
dow, and then stormed the space with guns drawn. the people that were in the squat when it was evict-
Two youths who were making love were dragged ed. However, the two people who were pulled out of
through broken glass, as police brought an end to the squat were questioned and refused to give any
the squat. During the raid, neighbors assembled information to the police. Additionally, a friendly
across the street in support of the squat, heckling community member who was unaffiliated with the
the police. On the other side, the neighbor who squat or Bash Back! was later approached by an un-
called the police was shouting homophobic and dercover cop, but also refused to answer questions.
racist slurs during the eviction. A few days after the
raid, the house was boarded up, marking the end of All things considered, the Marsha P. Johnson Queer
938 Bruce Street’s stint as an autonomous space. Collective has been one of the most exciting queer
anarchist projects to come out of a growing radical
The loss of the space was “a major blow to the radi- queer movement. It simultaneously provided for di-
cal queer/trans community” in Memphis, as the rect needs of the community as well as including peo-
space was central to plans to hold the 2010 Bash ple marginalized by mainstream gay culture. Creating
Back! convergence. News of the raid was dissemi- community spaces and collective housing, outside of
nated through radical websites shortly after it oc- the management of the state and in direct defiance of
curred. The local assimilationist gay community, capitalist property laws is a form of struggle that al-
however, was less supportive. While the Triangle lows for the development of true community, as shown
Journal, a gay newspaper, offered to a story, it was by the fact that the Marsha P. Johnson Collective had
revealed that their “motivations weren’t so much the support not only of radical queer and trans youth,
out of concern for homeless queer youth, but be- but also of many of its neighbors. It is projects such as
cause there was a recent incident of a anti-Don’t Ask these that allow radical communities to develop and
Don’t Tell billboard being vandalized and they felt flourish. While the forces of the state have shut down
the police weren’t ‘acting vigilantly enough to catch this project, the example is still an inspiring one, and
the perpetrators’”. The mainstream press sought to hopefully similar projects will develop in the future.

March 2009: American evangelicals Scott Lively and Don Schmeirer, along with Amer-

American Bigotry and its Deadly Consequences: ican “sexual reorientation coach” Caleb Lee Brundidge arrive in Uganda to speak at a
conference entitled “Seminar on Exposing the Homosexuals’ Agenda”. This conference

The Ugandan Anti-Homosexuality Bill and the US Evangelicals

was attended by many Ugandans, including many national politicians (Cabinet-level
ministers, Members of Parliament, etc).

October 2009: David Bahati, an Ugandan Member of Parliament, introduces The Anti-
Homosexuality Bill, which contains provisions calling for life imprisonment for the
crime of homosexuality, and the death penalty for aggravated homosexuality. Also
included are prison sentences of up to 7 years for attempted homosexuality, aiding
and abetting homosexuality, promotion of homosexuality, and failure to disclose the
offense, among other offenses. The death penalty and life imprisonment have since
been removed as penalties, leaving long prison sentences in place. The bill, as of early
January 2010, has not yet come to a vote.
Who Inspired It

Homophobia and bigotry are nothing new, especially not from right-wing Christians.
However, two things about this specific piece of legislation merit special attention.
First, the draconian measures go far beyond other laws regarding homosexuality,
with penalties for even failing to report queer people to the police. The second point
to note is the role that bigots from the United States played in the creation of this

This second point will be the focus of this article, as I am in no position to do any-
thing about Ugandan legislation. There is also no shortage of analysis of the bill it-
self, nor any shortage of outrage from people far more eloquent than I. Instead, I
want to focus on the people who promote an ideology of homophobia, who for too
long have preached hatred and violence against queer people.

Profiles in Bigotry: Four American Homophobes

While there were three Americans who actually spoke at the March seminar in Ugan-
da, there is a fourth American who also deserves a mention for the tremendous influ-
ence he has, and for his past statements on queer people. In addition to Scott Lively,
Don Schmeirer, and Caleb Lee Brundidge, Rick Warren must also be discussed.


Scott Lively

Lively is a long-time anti-gay activist who is based

out of Sacramento, CA. He is notable as the co-
author of The Pink Swastika, which claims that
many leading Nazis were homosexuals and asserts Don Schmeirer
that homosexuality was a root cause of the Nazi’s
militarism and aggression. He is also the founder of Schmeirer is a board member of Exodus Interna-
Abiding Truth Ministries, an anti-gay organization tional, an evangelical Christian “ex-gay” group.
( In 1992, dur- He is also the author of several books, notably
ing a campaign against a gay rights bill in Oregon, An Ounce of Prevention: Preventing the Homo-
he dragged a lesbian activist out of a meeting by sexual Condition in Today’s Youth. Both Exodus
her hair. He is connected to several virulently anti- International and Schmeirer himself condemn
queer groups, including the American Family Asso- the legislation, however, this did not hinder his
ciation and Watchmen on the Walls, an organiza- participation in the conference. Schmeirer is
tion based in Latvia that has been linked to violent also affiliated with a website called His Servants
attacks on queer people. Lively initially opposed (, which seems to be
the bill, but now supports it since the death penalty a publishing house exclusively carrying his titles.
and life imprisonment are no longer sentencing His Servants is based in Lockeford, CA.

Caleb Lee Brundidge

Brundidge is a counselor who works for International Healing Founda-

tion (IHF) as a certified sexual reorientation counselor. Caleb and the
IHF have denounced the legislation. He is also involved in an organiza-
tion called Extreme Prophetic, based out of Maricopa, AZ. Part of his
involvement in this ministry is as a DJ with Club Mysterio, a Christian
dance club. Brundidge is based out of Maricopa, AZ. His myspace is

Rick Warren

Warren did not attend the Uganda conference that Schmeirer,

Brundidge, and Lively spoke at. However, he has long-standing
connections to Uganda and specifically to reactionary pastors
championing the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, as well as Janet Musev-
eni, the wife of the President of Uganda and an important mem-
ber of Uganda’s Parliament. Of the four Americans profiled here,
Warren is the most famous and successful. He is best known for
his best-selling book The Purpose Driven Life. He is also famous as
the pastor who gave the invocation at President Barack Obama’s

He has long-standing connections to Uganda, partially based on

his ties to George W. Bush and partially on the influence of his
ideas on many Ugandan leaders. One particular connection that
stands out is his relationship with Martin Ssempa, an influential
pastor credited as one of the architects of the Anti-Homosexual-
ity Bill. While he has distanced himself from Ssempa, he cannot
back away from a statement he made to many Ugandan pastors in
March of 2008, saying that homosexuality is not a natural way of
life and thus is not a human right.

Warren initially refused to condemn the bill, claiming that he

was in no position to intervene on matters of domestic policy in
Uganda. However, after public pressure, he has condemned the bill
as anti-Christian. Warren is the pastor of Saddleback Church, a
megachurch located in Lake Forest, CA.

Bashing Back: A Call for Action Against These Bigots

The four people profiled above come from a range of viewpoints and credibility. One is a Holocaust re-
visionist, another has considerable mainstream political influence, and the other two are figures in the
ex-gay movement. What brings them together is their shared responsibility for a violently anti-queer law
that their ideas and speeches helped create. Despite their condemnations of the proposed law, their track
records and established positions speak for themselves, and they should be held responsible for the trag-
edy that they helped create.

There is no shortage of ideas on what actions can be taken against these people. We can look to a range of
groups past and present for tactics, from ACT UP! to Anti-Racist Action to Bash Back!. What is important
is that we make it abundantly clear that bigotry has its consequences for the bigots. These people, and the
organizations that they are involved with, should be confronted at every opportunity. They make their
name by attacking queer people. We must hold them responsible for their bigotry and all the lives they
ruin with their hate.

Recommended Link
-An excellent blog that has followed the developments in Uganda since the announcement of the confer-
Homosexuality and Revolution:
An Objective Approach
Part 1 By Daniel Guérin
Editor’s Note: This is the first of two parts in which But these nuances are relatively nothing but trifles.
this newly translated text will appear in Pink and Much more important is the difference between the
Black Attack. Daniel Guérin is best known among exclusively homosexual and the bisexual.
English speakers for his book Anarchism: From The-
ory to Practice and as the editor of No Gods No Mas- Must not the word homosexuality have therefore
ters: An Anthology of Anarchism. only defined a minority of individuals who by the
hazards of life, or Pavlovian repetition, or even the
1.Question of Definition castration complex have been habituated to turning
away from the feminine sex? That is doubtless the
Let us begin by refining a question of vocabulary. verdict of the bourgeois and Christian morale which
What should we think when we hear the word ho- has conferred its extensive and pejorative character
mosexuality? What content must one assign to the upon that manner of loving. The word would have
word Revolution? had to become obsolete as soon as homophobic
laws, prejudices against it, and finally the grounds
The first of these terms is cumbersome and ugly. It of a Church that insists that there is all the more
was fabricated by German sexology at the end of the reason to vituperate against this tendency given the
19th century. It designates the interest that one hu- number of its priests – and for good reason – who
man being (masculine or feminine) has in another devote themselves to it or attempt to deny it, disap-
person of the same sex. (I will only be dealing with peared. But we will see later that bourgeois society,
masculine homosexuality, knowing little, with rea- founded upon the family, will not so easily abandon
son, about feminine homosexuality). one of its last remaining battlements.

That said, we remain in confusion. Because this

propensity can manifest itself in all different kinds
of ways: disembodied, sublimated, or extremely
Revolt is the
physical. Between males, it can be directed at ado-
lescents, at mature men, even at children, to pretty
boys and athletes, to the slender androgynous as
elementary school of
well as Herculean men. It leans sometimes towards
sadism and sometimes towards masochism; it can the Revolution
be mad about leather or rubber, tempted by one fe-
tish or another; it may be active or passive or both by Let us now weigh out the word Revolution. The
turns; it may have a predilection for the hairless or term has been tarnished. Even to the extent that
for moustaches or beards; the limit of its partners’ fascism dared to claim itself as “revolutionary”. Any
age may higher or lower; its preference may go to little tyrant of an under-developed country has the
dimensions of the penis or the hardness of muscles; effrontery to boast about a “Council of the Revolu-
it may be fond of nudity or prefer outfits and, in the tion”. As to the bloc of countries of the East, that
latter case, civilian threads or uniform; it sometimes exercise a ruthless dictatorship upon their prole-
practices fidelity in the couple or love at first sight tariat and perpetrate the fraud of calling their State
for whoever comes along, or again both simultane- capitalism “socialism”, as to the so-called “commu-
ously. nist” parties that make themselves the servile in-
struments of a totalitarian empire, they would not
know how to pass themselves off Proudhon, and Lenin, base revo- cord times. On the other hand,
as revolutionaries. lutionary efficacy upon “virtue” an excess of chaste overtraining
and continence, and claim that can turn a champion into a drip.
But the word Revolution does not the overly frequent emission of Managers know this extremely
necessarily have to be banished. sperm weakens and emasculates well. May the managers of the so-
It retains a precise and irrefutable the combativeness of those who cial struggle be able to take a leaf
historical meaning. It designates fight against the establishment from their book.
the uprising of the secularly op- of the bourgeois order. If we had
pressed and exploited laboring wanted to pad out this article, we Homosexuality reproduces the
masses and their struggle for self- could have multiplied the ridicu- same schemes. Contrary to what
liberation, at the same time as lous citations of the bitter guard- some hypocrites of the class
it indicates the disalienation of ians of good character, and there- struggle may claim, it has never
each individual. Hence the dia- fore calculated that they were not been harmful to revolutionary
lectical relationship to establish very sexually gifted, or that they aggressiveness, as long as it does
between the words homosexual- repressed their carnal appetites not become excessive in an abun-
ity and Revolution. The present in an aberrant fashion. dance of one-night stands. If it is
article tries its best to do so. the object of certain reticence on
Against them, other revolution- the part of some self-proclaimed
2. Sexuality and Homosexuality aries maintain that the appeal of “guides” of the proletariat, it is
sensual pleasure does not at all for a completely different reason.
For a clear and exact comprehen- dull the energy of the revolution- They fear that sexual dissidence
sion of the subject which we are ary combatant, but much to the discredits their militants in the
now entering, we really must get contrary, the orgasm goes hand eyes of homophobes if it makes
it into our heads that homosexu- in hand with militant furia1. Such itself apparent; that it may even
ality is not an isolated phenome- was the point of view publicly make them subject to blackmail
non, specialized in some way, but displayed on the walls of the Sor- and other humiliations. But here
a simple variant of an immense bonne2 by the lascivious juvenil- we enter into another realm, that
propriety of animal and human ity of May 1968. of prejudice and “taboo”, that still
nature: sexuality. It cannot there- affects homosexuals as a whole
fore be interpreted or describedOf course, it is here to some ex- despite the progress that has been
except to assist a global investiga-
tent a question of individual cas- made.
tion on sexual performance. As es, sexual potential varying from
far as relationship with Revolu-zero to infinity from one being to 3. A Specific Case
tion, it is less a question of homo-
another, and certain arousals be-
sexuality than of sexuality period,
ing drained faster than others. To I would not know how to hide
a question of that which Freud become soft in the délices de Ca- the fact that in my “objective”
poue3 of an unbridled debauch-
designates under the term libido. research, the connections being
The problem that this poses for us
ery is not, obviously, the best established between homosexu-
is therefore that of the compat-preparation for the revolution- ality and Revolution are partially
ibility between the free exercise
ary clash. In a contrary sense, an representative of personal experi-
of sexual instinct and the contin-
overly long abstention from phys- ence. At the time of my entrance
gencies and demands of revolu- ical connections can create a state into the social struggle, I found
tionary struggle. Would fucking of nervous tension that is more myself to be simultaneously ho-
a lot detract from revolutionaryor less paralyzing, and therefore mosexual and revolutionary,
action or, on the contrary, exalt it?
not very conducive to militant moreover without the ability to
gallantries. Here Revolution and clearly distinguish which could
We thus find ourselves thrown sport present common points. A have been on the part of intellect
into the heart of an old debate boxer or an athlete, at the end of (lectures, reflections), and which
between militant revolution- a prolonged night of love, is hard- the sensory (physical attraction
aries. Some, like Robespierre, ly up to precise uppercuts or re- towards the working class, revolt,
rejection of my former bourgeois status). bachelors, than in the richly furnished apartments
of some former fellow students that I was forced to
For long years I always felt cut in two, loudly ex- continue to frequent.
pressing my new militant convictions and, by force, I found homosexual fantasies close to those that had
feeling required hide to my intimate
tendencies. The several writing extracts
that can be found in the second part of
the present document recount that di-
chotomy; very exactly, I believe. Cruel,
because I am by nature passionate about
frankness and extroverted. I kept a se-
cret with difficulty. I am even talkative.
To keep quiet, to withdraw into myself, is
hard for me. With comrades for whom
I felt friendship and whom I trusted, it
was all too often necessary for my to bite
my tongue so as not to venture into a
discussion on sexuality, much less to de-
fend an unorthodox version of love, even
in an impersonal fashion.

It was necessary for me to wait until May

68, that is to say until I was over sixty,
to be delivered from that heavy little ev-
eryday secret. And it was not given to
me until much later still to discover by
chance that that same companion in
revolutionary struggle of my early stag-
es in the movement only took pleasure
with boys; with his own students, if he
was teaching, with the spirited “teens”
if he danced erotically with them on the
weekends of the Arcadie journal4.

What’s more, my arrival to revolutionary ideas had been my own in the crisis of revolt of Max Stirner,
been, more or less, the product of my homosexual- when very much later The Unique One and his Prop-
ity, which had early on made me a shady character, a erty came into my hands.
social misfit, a rebel. In my autobiographical essays
I reported that my convictions had not drawn much So as to omit nothing of my travels throughout my
from revolutionary books and journals, although I entire life, it should be noted that never at any mo-
may have absorbed enormous quantities thereof, ment, nor in any way, did the intensity, the mul-
but from physical, sartorial, and fraternal (not to say tiplicity, the frenzy of my homosexual love affairs
spiritual) contact, in the frequenting of living-en- prevail over my intense militant activity in view of
vironments of the proletarian class. I learned and changing the world, or occult my revolutionary de-
discovered much more from such-and-such bicycle termination or persistence therein. I say this not to
dealer, with his cliental of hooligans, in such dirty boast, but because it is the strict truth. Moreover,
boxing or open conflict of the Ménilmontant dis- that concentration on what was essential for me did
trict. I exchanged more free and enriching words in not, of course, prevent me from drinking greedily
the smoky back shop of such-and-such little work- from other streams, from getting drunk on music,
ing-class restaurant, populated with such hardened poetry, visual arts, countries and voyages, all ben-
eficial diversions that ease the spirit and thus make to the home of the mayor of Ciotat. I was want-
it more capable, more disposed towards pursuing ed there to advise the members of the agricultural
militant struggle. union, of which I was then a part, to go as a delega-
tion to the mayor to complain about unkept prom-
Finally, so as to set straight those malicious per- ises concerning farmers’ water supplies. The mayor
sons who would call my revolutionary sincerity into expressed himself, in front of my assistant, in these
question – by the sole fact that the attire of young terms: “Mr. Guérin, that you have made love with
workers fascinates me – I must add that other young a sailor, a paratrooper, a Legionnaire, well, the mu-
men, no less attractive, have not at all influenced my nicipality doesn’t give a damn; but that you pester us
social orientation. Thus the charms of young sol- with stories of water, that, no!” My poor secretary
diers did not make me militaristic but, completely was uncomfortable. Whereas I, I clenched my fists
on the contrary, antimilitarist. Equally, the virility in rage.
and get-up of young Nazis, to which, of course, I am
not impervious, have not turned me into a fascist, The mother of a sailor to whom I had addressed a
but rather into a completely intractable antifascist. letter of fraternal sympathy believed it necessary
to telephone my assistant: “Tell Mr. Guérin that we
The effect produced on me by young workers was don’t go in for that sort of thing”.
not simply desire, but that they had exposed me to
the limitless perspective of class struggle. The churlishness of homophobes knows no bounds.
Yes, it generates revolt.
It is not only contact with the working youth that
made me a rebel. As homosexual, I had been the Revolt is the elementary school of the Revolution.
object of indelible humiliations and outrages. Some
examples: an eminent professor of philosophy, great
friend of the brilliant bisexual that was Gérard
Philippe, was brought before the correctional tribu- Endnotes:
nal of Aix-en-Provence. Indignant, I wrote to the 1. Spanish for ‘fury’
prosecutor of the Republic that the truly guilty per- 2. University of Paris
sons in the matter were those who enacted antisex- 3. Literally the delights of Capoue, this is a French
ual laws. The accused received two years of impris- proverb describing when one allows oneself to be
onment. He wrote me sadly that my letter, read to softened by easy living instead of preparing for a
the audience, had served to increase the sentence. struggle. Capua is a town in southern Italy that was
known in ancient times for the richness and sweet-
I found myself by chance not far from the entrance ness of life experienced by its inhabitants, and this
of the naval building sites of La Ciotat5 when I was is also thought to be the reason for Hannibal’s victo-
suddenly witness to a police charge against demon- ry in 215 BC, when his army managed to take Capua.
strators, who had come with their kids in order to 4. This was the publication of the group Arcadie,
protest the layoffs they had received as punishment created by André Baundry in 1954. Baudry’s aim
for syndicalist activity. Commanded to evacuate the was to promote homophila by gaining respectabil-
roadway, I was shoved by the cops, which I called ity and thus eventually social tolerance. Arcadie was
“garde-chiourmes”6 For the use of that word I was the only homosexual journal in France during the
brought before the correctional tribunal of Mar- 1960s, but it eventually became irrelevant to the
seille, and one of the argousins7, sent specially by movement and disappeared in 1982.
the Ciotaden police superintendent, made the mag- 5. A city in south-eastern France
istrates take a piece of paper wherein I was accused 6. Pejorative term for police officer, meaning: 1. a
of driving “little children” to the site; which I had strict disciplinarian, esp. a military one. 2. someone
done, but in all innocence. That “offense” cost me who stubbornly adheres to methods and rules.
a steep fine. 7. Pejorative term for police officer, as well as an old
term for a prison guard in charge of convict surveil-
Another time, my secretary and I were summoned lance.
tary, “Democracy 101: Pittsburgh G20 Protests and
Dear Straight Anarchists. the Police Occupation of Pitt University,” produced
by Pittsburgh Indymedia, Chicago Indymedia, Twin
WTF? Cities Indymedia, and the Glassbead Collective
A Radical Queer Complaint from Queens of footage of the Radical Queer black bloc was pre-
Trailer Trash. ceded by the sentence, “The protestors dispersed in
On September 24th some of the most militant polit- the late afternoon, but they reconvened later in the
icized street protests the States have seen in nearly evening.” This makes it seem as if the Radical Queer
a decade countered the G20 summit in Pittsburgh. black bloc later in the night was merely an exten-
Anarchist Queers and Trannies were on the front- sion of the People’s Uprising March that took place
lines of this struggle; bringing the numbers, the across town earlier in the day. It was not. We found
flare, and the wrecking crews. Radical Queers fought it even more frustrating that not even a brief men-
police and did everything they could, with what tion of the radical Queer/Trans organization that
they had, not to back down. A days worth of tear went into the march was included in the documen-
gas, rubber bullet attacks, and fending off straight- tary. A person from Pittsburgh even went as far as to
idiot-liberals, set the tone for what would be a night say that the march was not queer. Does this mean
of ravenous Queer revenge. A single march of 200+ that in order for militant actions to be recognized
Queers, Trannies, Womyn, POC, and some allies by the broader Anarchist community as Queer all
bashed the fuck back; causing the most property of the participants have to be laced in sequins and
destruction contained to a single neighborhood in throwing glitter?
Pittsburgh during the protests. So other Anarchists,
why the fuck are you ignoring us? This is not an isolated incident!

What Happened in Oakland on Thursday Night? Radical Queers made up a large number of people
putting hours of work into creating a militant show-
A week prior to the G20 protests Bash Back! Pitts- down at the Republican National Convention in St.
burgh, a radical Trans and Queer Liberation group, Paul. People with Bash Back! held multiple con-
called for a Queer Cabaret to be followed by a march sultas in the Midwest and on the East Coast to carve
through Oakland. Oakland has long been a neigh- out a radical Queer space in countering the Con-
borhood unfriendly to anyone not fitting into the vention. Bash Back! sent queers to Minneapolis well
straight-white-male category. By 10pm on the 24th over a month before the Convention to help with the
nearly 200 people gathered outside of the Queer organizing effort. However, in spokescouncils and
Cabaret. The mood was set. There were no illu- personal conversations the Bash Back! action was
sions. Everyone knew what was about to happen. more often than not labeled as one of the “fluffy”
It seemed that people were unified in their goal to actions, while actions with similar tones were never
terrorize straighty. Windows were smashed, dump- labeled soft or fluffy. “ Terrorizing Dissent,” a docu-
sters flipped and ignited, a frat boy homophobe and mentary created by Twin Cities Indymedia about
his friends were dealt with properly, and the vast the RNC completely ignored the Bash Back! action,
majority of participants left feeling empowered and which was the first publicly announced blockade in
energized. the lead up to the RNC. Footage of the radical Queer
blockade never made the final cut. In fact, the ac-
However, despite the fact that this march was called tion was not discussed or even referenced. However,
for by a local radical queer/trans group, took place footage of the Funk the War bloc, a roving dance
immediately following a Queer Cabaret, was execut- party called for by Students for a Democratic So-
ed largely by radical Trans/Queer people and was ciety was featured in a nauseatingly long segment.
lead by a banner reading, “Bash Back!” ; most of the Let us remind you that Radical Queers put over a
reportbacks describing the march include NONE of year into organizing our event and Bash Back! is the
these important details. In all fairness Crimethinc ONLY national network that has maintained itself
did state that the march had been, “Bash Back!” since the failure of the RNC protests.
themed. Whatever that means. In the documen-
Another incident that comes to what we have done so you can more effective, fabulous, and dar-
mind is a recent incident involv- maintain that our actions are ing than yall’s could ever be.
ing the arrest of Ariel Attack. Ariel Manarchist? It is clearly absurd
is a Trans/Queer person who has to call militancy carried out by -OR-
been involved in radical organiz- Womyn, Transfolk, People of
ing for sometime. Earlier in the Color, and Queers “Manarchist.” When it comes down to it , do
year Ariel was picked up by Den- Instead, you will just pretend you think that we are just a bunch
ver Police and accused of smash- that these actions were taken by of fags too concerned with iden-
ing 11 windows out of the Colorado straight white dudes. tity politics to ever contribute to
Democratic Party Headquarters. a broad social upheaval? Even
Rather than write their own ar- -OR- though, as pointed out before, in
ticle, repost- the last two years Radical Queers
ed an article from an extremely Are you refusing to give Radi- have taken the lead in the push
right-wing blog riddled with an- cal Queers credit because you for a more direct action oriented
ti-Trans rhetoric. Although there couldn’t give a fuck? Maybe you resistance.
were literally thousands of other just don’t care that radical Trans
news articles about the sabotage people and Queers are finally, In Conclusion
Anarchist News chose to run the after more than a decade on hia-
disgustingly anti-Trans right wing tus, building a culture centered It really is a shame that a band
one. Even after being asked and around fighting back. of radical Queers, involved with
eventually threatened the mys- a variety of Anarchist organizing
terious people behind Anarchist- –OR- projects for many years, has had refused to replace the to use a public forum to call you
article with a better one. They cit- Are you living in a delusion? You all out. But nevertheless we feel
ed Freedom of Speech in defense are so far from reality that you still we have to. It has become appar-
of their actions. To this all we can hold on to the idea that Queers, ent to us that while many of you
say is…Really? Other non-trans Trannies, POC and Womyn are at are our friends you still hold your-
radicals went on to question the too high of risk to ever be taking self on a higher pedestal because
timing and message of the action. these actions. So you pretend that you are straight and we are not.
Would anyone of you Cisgen- you, the white-straight person, You have mocked us, written us
dered white dudes be question- did the legwork and threw down. off and criticized us, when frankly
ing the timing and message of the you are in no place to do so. We
action if the person arrested for –AND/OR- are not trying to create divisions
allegedly smashing the windows on tactical grounds, excluding
was a white male Earth First!er ? You feel, as our self-appointed our struggle to root out Anarcho-
Our conclusion is: probably not. protector, you must act as if Tran- Liberals. Instead we are calling
nies/Queers haven’t taken these you out on your shit so we can all
So What the Fuck? actions in an effort to avoid the continue on this path toward in-
state coming down on us. surrection and most importantly
First we were Maoists. Then we liberation. To those of you who
were fluffy. Then we were not liv- -OR- will ignore these concerns we im-
ing up to our militant rhetoric. politely order you to stop breed-
Now, at best you are ignoring our Are you not mentioning our ac- ing like goddamn rabbits and find
actions and the massive risks we tions because you feel ignorant the nearest cliff to jump from.
are taking to carry them out. At as fuck when, the actual radi-
worst you are co-opting what we cals and actual queers, prove you
do and rewriting history to claim wrong time and time again? You
our struggles as your own. might feel a bit put off that we are
doing more to resist than you ever
Are you neglecting to mention have and our actions are insanely
‘Hell Hath No Fury’:
A Chronology of Genderfuck
The chronology below requires little introduction; the actions of
all these rioters speak for themselves. Suffice to say that this chro-
nology is a small attempt to address a fallacy in popular concep-
tions of insurrection—that insurrection is ‘macho,’ masculine, or
that it reinforces gender norms. It should also address another fal-
lacy in the commonly understood chronology of queer and trans
resistance—the one that says “Stonewall was first.”
A note on language. Any terms we apply anachronistically will
fail to reflect the ways these individuals and collectives identified.
Moreover, we have first-hand accounts from none of these rioters,
except some Stonewall and Compton’s participants. Since any lan-
guage we choose for such a broad span of time, place and culture
will be historically inaccurate, we just say genderfuck insurrec-
tion. It has the nicest ring to our ears.
Genderfuck is an active term; it speaks of a force that acts upon
gender normality. This is more interesting to us than other terms
that are passive and speak of identity, which attempt to freeze and
quarantine gender transgression into special individuals.
Our tour begins in Greece, the cradle of democracy and the loca-
tion of the most recent massive insurrection against the false hope
of democracy…

Hell hath no
390 – Thessalonica, Greece. Butheric, the commander of the mi-
litia, arrested a popular circus performer under a new law that
punished “male effeminacy.” The people of Thessalonica, who

fury like a loved the performer, rose up in rebellion and killed Burtheric. In
response to the insurrection, authorities rounded up and massa-
cred three thousand people.
drag queen 1250 – Southern France. A small crowd of cross-dressed males

scorned. pranced into the home of a wealthy landowner. They sang “We
take one and give back a hundred,” and ignored the protestations
of the lady of the house as they looted the estate of every posses-
-Sylvia Rivera sion.
1450-51 – Cade’s Rebellion in Kent & Essex, England. Led by the
“servants of the Queen of the Fairies,” the peasants 1630 – Dijon, France. Mére Folle and her Infante-
broke into the Duke of Buckingham’s land and took rie went beyond throwing carnivals and mocking
his bucks and does. elites. They led an uprising against royal tax of-
ficers. As a result, a furious royal edict abolished
1530 – ‘New Spain.’ During his campaign of conquest the Abbey of Misrule.
against communities of resistance in western por-
tions of “New Spain,” Spanish conquistador Nuño 1631 – England. Riots again enclosure led by ‘Lady
de Guzmán wrote of a battle. The very last indig- Skimmington’ drag mob.
enous warrior taken prisoner after the battle was, in
the conquistador’s words, “a man in the habit of a 1645 – Montpellier, France. Tax revolt led by La
woman” who had “fought most courageously.” Branlaire, who was called by a term for masculine
16th century – Europe. Urban carnivals throughout women.
Europe integrated cross-dressing and masks as key
elements. The festivals were organized by societies 1720 – The Caribbean Sea. Untold numbers of
of unmarried ‘men’ with trans personalities. They trans pirates sailed across the open seas in the
were called the Abbeys of Misrule, Abbots of Un- Golden Age of Piracy. It was not altogether un-
reason, ‘Mére Folle and her children,’ and others. common at the time for “women” to “pass as men”
During festival, they would ‘hold court’ with mock while sailing in the navy, on mercantile ships, and
marriages and issue coins to the crowds. They made as pirates. The two most well-known trans pirates
fun of the government, critiqued the clergy, and of the era are Read and Bonn. They sailed together
protested war and the high cost of bread. with Captain John Rackham, and their stories are
known from when they were put on trial for pi-
1629 – Essex, England. Grain riot led by ‘Captain’ racy. They were said to be the most fierce and cou-
Alice, who was trans. rageous fighters in their crew. Like most pirates,
they were faggots.
1725 – Covent Garden Molly House Rebellion, Lon- the factory to the ground. The rioting went on for
don, England. Since 1707, the Societies for the Ref- four days until it was stopped by the military at
ormation of Manners carried out systematic attacks Stockport, and then broke out again at Oldham.
on London’s queer underground. More than 20
“molly houses” were raided by police in London and 1820s – Ireland. The ‘Lady Rocks’ militant Irish re-
many “mollies” (mtfs) publicly dragged and hung sistance group active; inspired by the White Boys,
for cross-dressing. But on one day in 1725, the police they wore bonnets and veils.
attempted a raid of a Covent Garden molly house,
and the crowd of mollies, many in drag, fiercely and 1829 – The War of the Demoiselles in the Pyrenees.
violently fought back. A peasant uprising against restrictive forest code in
which the peasants cross-dressed.
1728-1749 – Toll Gate Riots in England. “To cite but
four examples, toll gates were demolished by bands 1830s – Ireland. The ‘Lady Clares’ militant Irish re-
of armed men dressed in women’s clothing and wigs sistance group active; inspired by the White Boys,
in Somerset in 1731 and 1749, in Gloucester in 1728 their ‘official’ costume was cross-dressing.
and in Herefordshire in 1735.”
1839-1844 – Welsh Toll-gate Riots, carried out by
1736 – Edinburgh, Scotland, “the Porteous Riots, ‘Rebecca and her daughters.’ One well-document-
which were sparked by a hated English officer and ed instance was on May 13, 1839. At dusk, a call of
oppressive custom laws and expressed resistance horns, drums and gunfire are be heard across the
to the union of Scotland and England, were carried western Welsh countryside. Armed male peasants,
out by men disguised as women and with a leader dressed as women, thunder up on horseback, wav-
known as Madge Wildfire.” ing pitchforks, axes, scythes, and guns. As they
storm the toll gate their leader roars: “Hurrah for
1760s – White Boy commons restoration move- free laws! Toll gates free to coal pits and lime kilns!”
ment in Ireland. The ‘White Boys,’ a peasant guer- These demands are punctuated by a cacophony of
rilla group who called themselves ‘fairies’ and did music, shouts, and shotgun blasts. The rebel troops
mischief at night, were a central feature of the rural smash the toll barriers and ride away victorious.
class war. They destroyed enclosures, sent threat- They call themselves “Rebecca and her daughters.”
ening letters to elites, reclaimed properties seized The Rebeccas are active for four years in Wales,
by landlords, and freed bound apprentices. They leading thousands of cross-dressed “daughters” in
were finally put down by armed force. Their spirit the destruction of turnpike toll barriers. They re-
inspired the formation of the ‘Lady Rocks’ and ‘Lady ceive widespread popular support.
Clares’ in the 1820s and 1830s, and the later Ribbon
Societies and Molly Maguires—all were involved in 1843 – Militant resistance group the ‘Molly Magu-
Ireland’s anti-enclosure and anti-colonial struggles ires’ active in Ireland. Inspired by the White Boys,
and all cross-dressed. the word “Molly” was the vernacular equivalent of
what we might call “queen” today.
1770s – Beaujolais, France. ‘Male’ peasants dressed
as women attacked surveyors assessing their lands 1959 – Cooper’s Donuts Riot, LA Los Angeles, May
for a new landlord. 1959. Police attempted a raid on Cooper’s Dough-
nuts, a late-night hangout for drag queens, butch
1812 – ‘General Ludd’s wives’ loom riot, Stock- hustlers, street queens and johns. The cops de-
ton, England. One of the early Luddite Rebellions manded IDs. The queers fought back. Doughnuts
against the Industrial Revolution was led by “Gen- and coffee cups become projectiles. Fighting spilled
eral Ludd’s wives,” two cross-dressed workers. The out onto the street. The cops, taken by storm, called
mob of hundreds broke windows, stoned the house for backup. Rioters were arrested and the street was
of Joseph Goodair, a factory owner, and later set fire closed off for a day.
to his house. They destroyed the products in the
steam loom factory, smashed the looms and burned 1966 – Compton’s Cafeteria Riot, San Francisco, Au-
gust 1966. Compton’s Cafeteria, an all-night hang- were forced to barricade themselves inside the Inn.
out for drag queens, and hustlers in the Tenderloin Garbage cans, garbage, bottles, rocks, and bricks
neighborhood. The restaurant management called were hurled at the building, breaking the windows.
the police on a group of young queens who were be- Rioters ripped up a parking meter and used it as a
ing rowdy. A police officer who was used to roughing battering ram. The mob lit garbage on fire and sent it
up Compton’s regulars grabbed a queen. She threw through the broken windows; squirted lighter fluid
her coffee in his face. A fight broke out. Plates, trays, inside and lit it. Riot police arrived on the scene, but
cups, and furniture were thrown. The plate-glass were unable to regain control of the situation. Drag
windows of the restaurant were smashed. Police queens danced a conga line and sang songs amidst
called for backup as the riot took the street. The win- the street fighting to mock the inability of the po-
dows of lice to re-
a cop establish
car were order. The
smashed rioting
and a contin-
newspa- ued un-
per stand til dawn,
went up and for
in flames. the next
four days.
1969 – Crowds
Stonewall filled the
Riot, New streets
York City, a n d
June 28. smashed
The po- m o r e
lice con- cop cars,
duct a set more
‘routine’ fires, and
raid of the looted
Stone- stores.
wall Inn
in Green- 1970 –
wich Vil- New York
lage. They City. Mar-
began to sha P.
round up Johnson
trans peo- and Syl-
ple, drag via Rivera,
queens and kings to be arrested for cross-dressing, veterans of the Stonewall riots, formed the Street
which was illegal. Hostility grew and grew until an Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR). Mar-
officer shoved a queen, who responded by hitting sha and Sylvia opened the STAR house for homeless
him on the head with her purse. The crowd became drag queens and runaway queer youth to stay in.
fierce. Cops were pelted, first with coins and then The house mothers hustled to pay rent so their kids
with bottles and stones. When a bull-dyke resisting wouldn’t have to. The youth, in turn, stole food to
arrest called to the crowd for support, the situation bring home. STAR linked up with the Young Lords,
exploded. The crowd tried to topple the paddy wag- a revolutionary Puerto Rican group, and with the
on while the police vehicles got their tires slashed. Black Panther Party.
The crowd, already throwing beer bottles, discov-
ered a cache of bricks at a construction site. Cops
Not Separation:
Some Thoughts On The Church and The State
By Phil There are two main parts to the ernment itself. The libertarian-
libertarian argument: an eco- economic argument, for instance,
nomic side, and a social side. The implicitly asserts that equal pro-
The same-sex marriage debate, economic argument asserts that tection under law is a virtue that
for the political mainstream, has the tax breaks and other financial is currently not being achieved,
essentially split into two camps: benefits to marriage amount to a because of the subsidies available
the Right, which is against it, and subsidy for those who marry. Es- to those who choose to marry.
the Left, which is for it. These, of sentially, those of us who do not Similarly, the libertarian-social
course, only represent the main- marry are paying for those who do. argument rests on the assump-
stream discourse and marginalize The social argument claims that tion that government should not
other positions. Anarchists and government should not have any determine who can and cannot
other radicals, for example, have say in who marries who, as con- marry, as that is an intrusion on
been historically opposed to the senting adults should be allowed people’s liberty.
institution of marriage in general, to enter into a marriage without
and more recently have specifical- state intervention. Both of these What both of these arguments do
ly come out against same-sex mar- arguments are persuasive, but the not address is the idea that gov-
riage because of its assimilationist problem is not in the arguments ernment itself is the problem. In-
nature. Another position that has themselves. Rather, the problem stead, the problem is framed as a
been gaining popularity in recent lies in the assumptions that they matter of too much government;
years is a libertarian argument rest upon, and by extension the as if a mere reduction in govern-
that the state has no business in issues they do not address. ment meddling is enough to solve
the institution of marriage, and the problem of same-sex mar-
that marriage should be stripped Perhaps the biggest difference be- riage. Furthermore, an argument
of legal status and instead be sim- tween an anarchist and a libertar- that is premised on finding an ap-
ply a matter for churches. ian perspective is the role of the propriate role for the state in our
state. As mentioned above, the lives carries with it an acceptance
At first glance, this argument contrast is between anti-statism of whatever this appropriate role
seems to fit with the anarchist and non-statism. The difference may be as subjects of the state.
critique. It essentially promotes may appear to be simply a matter That is, if we are to petition for a
a non-state solution to the ques- of terminology, but this is not the better government, we are argu-
tion of marriage, taking govern- case. Rather, the divide between ing as citizens, as people with a
ment and state regulation out of the two positions is stark; because stake in governed society.
the equation. However, this is a the entire libertarian argument is
false alternative precisely because based on a critique of government Another failing of the libertar-
it is a non-state solution. What is intervention into people’s private ian perspective is that it fails to
needed is an anti-state solution. lives, rather than a critique of gov- critique civil society, and all of
its connections to the state. As to adjust the role of government the system, meaning that it can-
anarchists, we are not simply in our lives to a proper level. We not subvert the political process
concerned with the abolition of do not seek to make marriage (the rule of law).
government, but also with the ab- a strictly religious institution.
olition of all hierarchy and domi- These are all political solutions to The political system and political
nation. Making marriage simply the political question of same-sex process thus preclude solutions
a religious commitment does marriage. outside of its rules and limits. The
nothing to address the patriarchal libertarian solution to the demand
nature of marriage, nor does it at- The modern marriage equal- of same-sex marriage falls within
tack the widespread heterosexism ity movement has its roots in the these limits, and does nothing to
that finds a base of support in the queer liberation movement of the challenge them. It does not issue
church. 1960s. This movement was a re- a challenge to the political sys-
sponse to the structural hetero- tem, or the larger social system.
If we want the abolition of hierar- sexism that continues to function It solves the demand without the
chy and authority, the destruction as a pillar of American society. state, but only in a way that leaves
of oppression and domination, However, when the movement the political process untouched.
then our targets must include all turned to political activism as
institutions that support, pro- a vehicle for change, it adopted To move towards an anti-state so-
mote, or rely on these things. A the logic of the political system. lution, we must first argue for a
stronger separation of church The political system has definite new understanding of the ques-
and state does nothing for this, rules and structures that limit tion of same-sex marriage. As
and thus the non-state solution both the ways in which demands noted above, the momentum that
for same-sex marriage is useless are framed, and the solutions to has manifested itself in politi-
at best. It only solves the political these demands. These demands, cal activism for marriage equal-
question of rights, of proper gov- because they have to adhere to ity has its roots in a struggle for
ernment, and of equal protection. an abstracted system of rules, liberation. This struggle, through
These are of little interest to those become abstracted because they its politicization, was reduced to
of us who seek queer liberation. must be defined in the terms of a series of demands on the state.
the political system. Thus, same- We must reject and fight against
We do not appeal to government sex marriage becomes a political the politicization of struggle, the
as its subjects, seeking the equal- demand, necessitating a political transformation of our lives into a
ity that it has long promised but solution. These political solutions political question.
never delivered. We do not seek must also adhere to the rules of


By Phil it is critical in the struggle for total

Identity, Politics, and Anti-Politics:

Introduction liberation to understand the ways
identities are constructed to subju-
I am a _______________ who seeks gate people.
the destruction of class society.
That blank can be filled with a The academics have been speak-
variety of words, from worker to ing for years of “the Other” as the
queer to individual to mixed-race most abstract identity, defined in
person to anarchist. What each of opposition to the dominant forces.
these terms has in common is that While this abstraction works in the
they each signify a certain identity. most general comparisons of vari-
While identity politics have gained ous identities, it is in the specifici-
traction in both anarchist/radical ties of distinct identities that affini-
scenes and society more generally, ties are built. A discussion of every
the very idea of identity politics is socially-enforced identity would be
a problem. Identity politics, as a impossible; instead, I will focus on
political force, seeks inclusion into an analysis of queer identity. Spe-
the ruling classes, rather than act- cifically, I will attempt to articulate
A Critical Perspective

ing as a revolutionary force for the an anti-assimilationist and anar-

destruction of class society. How- chist/communist perspective on
ever, this does not mean we should queer identity, with implications
dismiss identity or identity-based for other identities as well. This is a
organizing and action. The institu- perspective critical of identity poli-
tions that create and enforce class tics as well as a false unity under
society (capital, work, the state, any one identity (citizen, human
police) rely on identities in their race, proletariat). It is critical of as-
strategy of control, by attacking similationist politics and practice,
some identities and not others, or and perhaps most importantly, it is
by pitting various identities at odds explicitly anti-state and anti-capi-
to compete for access to the privi- talist.
lege of acceptance by the dominant
classes. In their use of repression 1: Social construction and social
based on identities, those in pow- facts
er also create affinity among the
dominated. Let this be made clear: To understand identity in the con-
I do not contend that every person text of the present social order, one
who identifies with or is identified must understand the concept of
by a particular social identity has social construction. This concept,
a common experience. Similarly, I in short, refers to the ways in which
do not argue that these identities social institutions establish, regu-
are anything other than socially late, and enforce various identities.
constructed. However, I do argue One especially telling example is
that people who share an identity the way in which those labeled “in-
can find stronger affinity with oth- sane” are then forced into institu-
ers who share that identity. This is tions which serve only to reaffirm a
due to the ways that capitalism and supposed insanity. Homosexuality
the state enforce identities. While was once considered a mental dis-
these identities are socially con- order, after all.
structed, this does not lessen their
importance or their reality. Indeed, The term socially constructed car-
ries an unfortunate oppression to either
connotation, however. the official business
It is assumed that if of state power and
an identity is socially capitalism, or else to
constructed, then it the power of the stat-
differs in some way ist, capitalist social
from a more authentic, order. The distinc-
natural identity. This tion, however, be-
assumption resembles comes academic. The
religious dogma in that problem clearly lies in
we are asked to accept this society, in the so-
an unchanging human cial order and the in-
nature as defined by stitutions that create,
someone else. In real- maintain, and enforce
ity, to say identity is it. Much as identity is
a social construction social, so is the op-
means that identities pression around it: it
are defined and en- is a result of human
forced by social insti- interactions, not any
tutions such as govern- sort of higher power.
ments and businesses.
Thus, identity becomes The term social con-
social fact in the sense struction means
that it materially affects also that identity is
people. From queer- not fixed, but rather
bashing to abortion changes according to
bans, certain identities assault and domestic violence are a variety of factors.
carry with them material disad- often considered interpersonal Particularly, there exists a ten-
vantages. From property rights to disputes, rather than having a sion between those who benefit
Jim Crow, certain identities carry larger meaning in the context of from inequality, and those who
with them material advantages. a deeply patriarchal social order. are oppressed by inequality. In
These identities are socially con- However, even if there is not an the United States, this tension
structed, and thus become social agent of the state or an agent of is demonstrated by the range of
facts. These inequalities are not capital directly involved, one can- identity-liberation movements
expressions of some pre-existing not ignore the social framework that have been active in the Unit-
natural order. Instead, the cause which normalizes such behavior. ed States. With a few notable ex-
of these material inequalities can One must only consider the fact ceptions (women’s suffrage be-
be traced to the socio-economic that the institution of marriage ing one), identity-movements
context in which they existed. was originally a property relation- rose to prominence in the 1960s,
This context is determined by ship, and even until recent de- as chants of black power, gay is
the dominant social order, which cades rape was acceptable, as long good, and sisterhood is powerful
continues to be that of capitalism as it was in the context of mar- became fixtures at demonstra-
and state power. riage. This is not to say that per- tions and protests. These demon-
petrators have any excuse. They strations and conflicts were sites
Not every act of discrimination or still enforce the social system of of struggle over what was meant
oppression, however, can be con- patriarchy, despite (usually) not when the terms black, gay, or
sidered a direct act of the state or acting in an official capacity on woman were used. To be assigned
capital. This is particularly true behalf of the state or capital. any of these terms meant that one
when one considers specific man- was not fully human, that there
ifestations of patriarchy. Sexual We can thus trace identity-based was a defect that nobody could
correct. The Black Power, Queer Liberation, and here that we encounter one of the main problems
Women’s Liberation movements contested the idea of identity politics: the groups which sought to
that people were to be defined by these identities challenge identity-based oppression have instead
and thus undeserving of equality. These contesta- merely entered into a partnership with those who
tions (as each movement was, to a large degree, fo- benefit from oppression. This partnership concerns
cused only on one specific identity) meant that not the ability to define the political agenda for a certain
only could political inequality be challenged, but identity. This is clearly demonstrated in the queer
also the very definitions of identity. In other words, community by the HRC, with their push for hate
people began to actively and consciously construct crime laws, marriage, and military service. These
their identities and explore identity in relationship demands show that the HRC has accepted the logic
to the larger social structure. of and requested partnership in the government
and the marketplace. Essentially, the HRC is fight-
The initial exploration of identity proved useful, ing for assimilation into, rather than the destruc-
providing a greater understanding of the ways in tion of, a system that creates and enforces the very
which domination and its specific manifestations oppression they are allegedly struggling against.
(racism, sexism, homophobia) are connected to the
state and capitalism. The 1960s were also years of re- However, even identity politics does not have unfet-
sistance and uprising more generally. These events tered power in the political mainstream. Even the
did not happen separately; instead, they were a part appearance of altering power relations in this soci-
of a larger discontent with society as a whole. How- ety is, to some, a threat. These reactionaries claim
ever, much as the energy of the 1960s was dissipat- that identity politics seeks special rights for certain
ed into the traditional, rigid forms of activism and groups. This flawed logic rests on the idea that, since
managed dissent, so was the revolutionary potential people are guaranteed equality under the Constitu-
of exploring identity. tion, then the problem of legal inequality is non-
existent. Even if one accepts the logic of the state,
Over time, these movements have left us with or- the discrepancy between legal/political equality
ganizations such as the National Association for and social equality is telling.
the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Hu-
man Rights Campaign (HRC), and National Orga- Another reaction to the Left’s adoption of identity
nization for Women (NOW) as the self-proclaimed politics is the rise of hard-Right identity politics.
leaders in the struggle for equality under the law. This leads to absurdities such as men’s rights move-
However, what is interesting to note is that these ments, white rights movements, and groups dedi-
organizations serve as explicitly political organiza- cated to preserving Christian culture and identity.
tions, seeking political equality through political One can see a connection between these two reac-
processes. These groups can thus be understood to tionary positions, despite their apparent contradic-
engage in identity politics. tions. Each position represents a different tactic
towards the same goal: maintaining a class-based
2: Identity Politics and Anti-Identity Politics society along with the homophobic, white-suprem-
acist, and patriarchal structures that uphold it. This
Given the political effectiveness of these organi- stands in contrast to identity politics, which seeks
zations, their model has been emulated by oth- to mildly reform class society and its institutions.
ers seeking to reform the current socio-economic
order. This has led to identity politics becoming In short, there today exists a tension between pro-
a central part of the contemporary United States gressive identity politics and reactionary anti-iden-
political order. This is especially true in the liberal tity politics. The failure of both rests in their reliance
reformist movement, where organizations such as on the state and capitalism as basis for their vision
the NAACP, HRC, and NOW are prominent. With of society. Both seek to better manage the present
their successes in political reform, they (and many order. It is clear: there exists a subset of people in
other identity-politics organizations) have become this society that benefit from the current social or-
embedded in the dominant political discourse. It is der. These people include queer people, people of
color, women, and every identity. Politicians, police, finity?” is a large one, and well beyond the scope of
prison guards, landlords, and bosses: these are our this work. What is clear, however, is the problem of
enemies. They come in all forms. identity politics to those of us who seek total libera-
It is equally clear that queer-bashers, rapists, and
racists are similarly enemies of liberation. While By working within the political arena, identity-
in some cases these are not people with access to politicians work within accepted notions of power,
and the backing of institutional power, the violence change, and struggle. They become another lobby,
they inflict is no less real or important. Indeed, their another special interest that some politicians are
tactics are taken directly from the state, and uphold beholden to while others rail against them. The
systems of control even after the formal powers of- people that constitute these identities are lost in all
ficially abandon them. of this, become a voting bloc to be traded around
rather than people.
Identity is meaningful in that it marginalizes us
in different ways, and the affinity that comes from This model fails us. Our lives are not political ques-
similar or shared experiences is powerful. However, tions, positions to be taken, or votes to be won. We
it must always be remembered that such affinity is cannot be reduced into discrete categories of iden-
rendered useless when it is integrated in a system tity, each with its own set of lobbyists to win over
of domination and control. Such affinity ought to the bourgeois politicians. This is the dead-end of
be encouraged, as it strengthens our bonds to one assimilationism. This is the dead-end of politics.
another and promotes conflict with the social order, Rather than more politics, more money for lobby-
be it bombing police cars or expelling rapists from ist, and more ad campaigns, we need an end to the
one’s community. political process.

3: Identity Anti-Politics: One mixed-race queer’s It is, after all, the politicians who had us criminalized
perspective or killed. It is the capitalists who make us work to
survive, or sometimes keep us out of work. Why do
A specific sort of affinity is generated between peo- we petition those who marginalize us for an end to
ple who are faced with similar oppression based on our marginalization? They are interested in expand-
socially constructed identities. However, problems ing their power over us, or at the least maintaining
arise when this affinity is expanded to mean some- it. It is true that they occasionally allow moder-
thing else, such as an idea of racial unity or gender ate concessions, but these concessions should not
unity. Affinity cannot be reduced to mere identity: pacify us. These concessions are not liberation, and
for example, simply because I am mixed-race does sometimes they’re not even liberating. The expan-
not mean I have affinity with all people of color. sion of marriage rights? Being allowed to fight in
While we are likely to share similar experiences, the military? These goals are useless because they
merely having such experiences does not consti- are simply political goals; they seek to alter the way
tute affinity. The question of “what constitutes af- the political system functions.

Identity politics, as a The point is not to achieve equality by the political

process. The point is to destroy the political process,
political force, seeks inclusion and with it the apparatus that props up class soci-
ety. This requires an anti-political outlook. Identity
into the ruling classes, rather must be treated not as a political concept, but as
a facet of our everyday lives. My experiences have
than acting as a revolution- convinced me that the current socio-economic or-
ary force for the destruction of der has to be destroyed. I find stronger affinity with
other queer people because of my understanding of
class society. homophobia, but I will not vote for gay marriage. I
find stronger affinity with other mixed-race people
because of my understanding of racism, but I will ise for solidarity, as those marginalized find affinity
not vote for harsher hate crime laws. within their communities with those who face simi-
lar struggles. Additionally, the understanding of
It is clear that, because identities shape our experi- connections between one’s experience with identity
ences, we cannot write off identity as unimportant. and one’s experience with the larger socio-econom-
However, it is equally clear that we cannot afford ic order allows for a solidarity that goes beyond any
to maintain the identities imposed upon us. Thus, specific identity.
an apparent contradiction arises between the ne-
cessity of recognizing socially constructed identity The importance of identity lies not in identity poli-
while simultaneously trying to destroy the class so- tics, but rather in the fact that identity is socially
ciety that enforces those identities. This contradic- constructed by the dominant system in order to
tion proves difficult, with a range of responses from maintain capitalism and state power. In turn, the
a disregard for the destruction of class society to a oppression that follows is an integral part of the
disregard for identity, and many other arguments social order as a whole, whether the violence is on
somewhere between these two positions. The prob- an interpersonal, institutional, or structural level.
lem is that there is no contradiction. Indeed, the Oppression also helps build affinity, through shared
former necessitates the latter. In order to destroy experiences or through shared struggle. Recogniz-
class society, an analysis of how it functions is criti- ing identity and identity-based oppression as social
cal. In short, we must know our enemy. However, it facts allows for stronger affinity, and the connections
is important to avoid the pitfall of essentialism; it between one’s experiences and the larger social or-
must always be understood that these identities are der similarly allows for a solidarity between people
constructed by the larger socio-economic structure. who want to abolish the state, abolish capitalism,
The oppression that affects people with various and abolish the domination that both maintain over
identities is enforced by state power and the power our lives. This abolition requires not political nego-
of capital. Understanding this is generates a prem- tiation, but anti-political organizing and action.

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